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Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Jewelry Hygiene: Is Your Jewelry Making You Sick?

Recently got a note from a friend who is working with David Bellman of Bellman Jewelers and his Jewelry Hygiene project. While conducting research during the development of the AquaSonic Wave, the first jewelry cleaning system to deliver professional results, David tested the surface of jewelry as it came into his store to be cleaned and the bacteria levels that he found were alarming. 

I really looks like a fabulous product - the AquaSonic Wave uses the steam, water and soap from a home dishwasher to clean and sanitize jewelry like it has just been cleaned at your local jeweler.  
David just launched a Kickstarter campaign where people can pre-order the AquaSonic Wave and will begin fulfillment of orders in Jan/Feb 2014.  Here is the link to the Kickstarter video for the full story:

Jewelry’s Dirty Little Secret
Jewelry Hygiene: how your jewelry could be making you sick

(Left) “Before”: Hygiena ATP level 1,376; (Right) “After” Hygiena ATP level 18

(New York, NY) September 24, 2013- The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) estimates that each year 76 million people get sick, more than 300,000 are hospitalized, and 5,000 Americans die as a result of foodborne illnesses alone. When factoring in the cases of illness from viruses and flu related sickness, these numbers grow exponentially. From constant hand washing and sanitizing to flu shots, the American public goes to great lengths to avoid getting sick. Even with all of these preventative measures, there is a major source of bacteria that people wear on their bodies every day that has been completely overlooked until now: jewelry.   

“Washing your hands DOES NOT eliminate germs and bacteria from your jewelry,” explains David Bellman of Bellman Jewelers. “Even if a person washes his or her hands religiously, there can still be millions of bacteria lurking on the surface and festering between the nooks and crannies of a jewelry setting, and that bacteria can make you sick. I call my discovery “Jewelry Hygiene®.”

Bellman is the inventor of the AquaSonic Wave, the only at-home, professional-quality jewelry cleaning system that will not only make your jewelry sparkle like it just came from the jeweler, but also reduce your chances of contracting and spreading infectious bacteria that can lead to colds, flus, and foodborne illnesses. Bellman’s co-inventor is Dean Kamen, the acclaimed inventor of thousands of innovations from the heart stent to the portable kidney dialysis machine, and perhaps most notably, the Segway.  Using steam, hot water, and soap and their proprietary anti-bacterial cleaning agent within a home dishwasher, the AquaSonic Wave can remove 99% of dirt and germs from an average jewelry surface.

When checked with a Hygiena ATP tester, the same device health inspectors use to test the cleanliness of surfaces in restaurants and hospitals, most jewelry surfaces have an ATP hygiene index in the 500-2,000 range. According to Hygiena ATP Levels of Clean (reference chart below), this would put the jewelry in the category of “Very Dirty” (501-1000) or “Filthy” (> 1,000), carrying a danger classification with “high risk of contamination from disease-causing bacteria.”

“When I saw the data regarding the bacteria levels on jewelry it was very frightening“, says Dr. Holly Neefe MD, a pediatrician and medical director.  She continues, “In my 17 years of practice, I have never thought about jewelry hygiene, not even one time. If our jewelry is harboring infectious bacteria, it is something that the general public should understand and react to.”

Bellman’s own medical pilot study suggests timing between cleanings for optimal jewelry hygiene is 2 weeks. When Bellman surveyed customers in his jewelry store, he found that most admitted to not having their jewelry professionally cleaned for months, and even years on end due to the inconvenience of having to make a trip to the jeweler. The AquaSonic Wave allows consumers to effectively clean and disinfect their jewelry conveniently, while washing the dishes from Tuesday night’s dinner. AquaSonic Wave users can shake hands, cook family dinner, and prepare their children’s school lunches with minimal risk of spreading infectious, illness causing bacteria due to contaminated jewelry.

Bellman launched a Kickstarter campaign on September 21st to fund development and production of the final AquaSonic Wave prototype. For more information visit  Pre-order yourAquaSonic Wave system here:

Interesting Jewelry Hygiene and Illness Statistics:
  • 60 billion dollars’ worth of jewelry is sold every year in the U.S alone; most of the jewelry is never cleaned. These un-cleaned pieces have been shown to have 10 fold higher bacteria levels than skin, after you wash your hands.
  • Over 80 million U.S. homes have dishwashers and the average American owns over 12 items of fine jewelry.
  • 76 million people get sick, more than 300,000 are hospitalized, and 5,000 Americans die as a result of foodborne illnesses each year- CDC
  • Approximately 5% to 20% of U.S. residents get the flu, and more than 200,000 people are hospitalized for flu-related complications each year- CDC 
  • 90% of common infections can be prevented by proper hygiene- Dr. Charles Gerba (Dr. Germ)
  • 69 Million employees were absent from work due to illness in 2003, 21% Reduction in absenteeism by employees who used sanitizer15% of payroll spent by companies in 2002 on absenteeism
Submitted by Kristen Lawler

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